The Lees-McRae men's volleyball used a balanced attack while collecting its third consecutive win on its way to a sweep of King University, 25-17, 25-19,
25-23, in Conference Carolinas action Tuesday night at Williams Gymnasium in Banner Elk, N.C.
The Bobcats (8-4, 3-2 CC) remain flawless at home (4-0) while holding King to a .143 clip on the match. The Tornado (6-5, 3-3) saw two players record double digit assists while committing 11 service errors.
Senior Matt Harpenau (Cincinnati, Ohio) continued his impressive campaign by delivering one of his 10 kills to give LMC an 8-7 lead in the opening set.
The Bobcats used that momentum to produce a 10-5 run, capped off by a Brady Markle (York, Pa.) kill to take an 18-11 lead.
King used a pair of LMC attack errors to cut the deficit to five, 19-14, but LMC remained strong thanks to kills from John Lucas (Cincinnati, Ohio) and Harpenau to close out the set, 25-17.
Coach Dave Schmidlin's squad hit a game-high .391 in opener.
The Bobcats led wire-to-wire in the middle set while an attack error from the Tornado' Eddie Moushikhian propelled the home squad to an 8-4 lead.
Moushikhian redeemed himself with a pair of kills, despite King trailing 17-15. Both teams combined for five service errors through the next seven points.
Lucas and Randy Ramirez (Guaynabo, Puerto Rico) smashed a kill each before Lucas and Markle recorded a block to give LMC the set, 25-19. King's Matthew DeLong collected one of his eight kills to push the Tornado lead to 10-7 in the third set.
LMC would rally to tie it eight times before consecutive kills from Markle and Ramirez and back-to-back block assists from Josh Cothron (Bradenton, Fla.) to give the Bobcats a lead it never relinquish, 24-21.
The Tornado made it interesting following a timeout, 24-23, but Markle slammed the door with his game-high 12th kill on the evening.
Harpenau notched 10 kills while Ramirez paved the way with 30 assists.
Moushikhian led King with 11 kills. Jeff Bosslet and DeLong chimed in with 16 and 11, respectively.
LMC returns to action with a trip to Newark, N.J. to battle Rutgers-Newark Friday at 7 p.m.
LMC Softball Swept at Tusculum
The Lees-McRae softball team dropped a pair of games at Tusculum, 1-0, 8-0, in nonconference action Tuesday afternoon at Red Edmonds Field in Greeneville, Tenn.
The Pioneers (5-7) scratched across the lone run in the first game in the bottom of the sixth while Carolyn Williamson collected five hits on the day. The Bobcats (0-10) saw Celeste Sheppard (East Julian, N.C.) toss a gem in the first game despite the offense producing only five hits on the day.
LMC looked poised to strike early after Sarah Stallings (Greensboro, N.C.) led off the game by reaching on a third-strike wild pitch. After reaching second on a sacrifice bunt, the freshman was thrown out trying to steal third to thwart the threat.
Williamson led off the Pioneer bottom half with a single, but was hosed by Sadie Lagle (Harmony, N.C.) trying to steal second.
Both offenses remained stagnant until the sixth when Lagle looped a single into left before advancing to second when Sheppard reached on an error.
TC senior Kelly King (3-4) ended the threat when she knocked down a hot shot off the bat of Hollie Crickenberger (Boydton, Va.), ricocheting it to short for the put out.
The Pioneers rallied with two outs following a Kaytlin Stroinski triple, who would eventually score on ball four to Robin Stoner.
Sheppard (0-5) scattered seven hits while going the distance. King earned the win with six innings of three-hit ball.
TC jumped out to an early 4-0 lead after one inning in the second game. Tavi Parris cranked a two-run homerun following another Williamson single.
Stroinski scored on a fly ball off the bat of Katie Brennan to make it 3-0. Nicole Ball stroked an RBI double to conclude the scoring.
In the bottom of the third, Stroinski continued to pester LMC when she scored on an error to stretch the lead to five.
The junior struck again with a two-run double to left center. Courtney Hutcherson capped off the scoring with an RBI groundout.
LMC freshman Charlie Dutton (Monroe, Ga.) (0-5) suffered the loss after allowing four runs (three earned) and striking out six in three innings of work.
The Pioneers' Rachel Medley tossed five innings of two-hit shutout ball. The Bobcats return to action Friday when they participate in the Shaw University Softball Challenge in Raleigh, N.C. LMC battles Shaw at 10 a.m. before taking on Elizabeth City St. at 4 p.m.